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Art Dealer Arrested for Allegedly Importing Ivory

Art Dealer Arrested for Allegedly Importing Ivory

An art and antiquities dealer has been arrested for his alleged involvement in an elaborate African elephant ivory smuggling scheme.

Federal prosecutors contend that Victor Gordon is responsible for the illegal import of nearly a ton of ivory from 2006 to 2009.

Gordon allegedly financed the purchase of raw ivory in Africa, which was then carved and stained to appear old.  Ivory collected before 1989 can be legally traded under international treaty and American law.

Elephants have been poached for their tusks for thousands of years.  In the last 40 years, however, poaching has led to a serious decline in elephant populations; the 1970′s and 1980′s alone saw a 60% population decline across Africa.

Salvatore Amato, Special Agent-in-Charge of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Northeast Region Office of Law Enforcement said in a statement (PDF) that, “illegal ivory trafficking jeopardizes the survival of an imperiled species and undermines our commitment to tracking down profiteers who deal in black market ivory in the United States.”

Gordon pleaded not guilty to 10 counts of smuggling charges and violation of the Endangered Species Act. If convicted, he faces up to 20 years in prison.

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Katie Waldeck

Katie is a freelance writer focused on pets, food and women’s issues. A Chicago native and longtime resident of the Pacific Northwest, Katie now lives in Oakland, California.

61 comments

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3:52PM PDT on Aug 29, 2012

If found guilty this dealer should be given a lethal injection. He's of no use in this world and it would be a deterrent to others. Why keep this kind of scum alive? Think how many elephants would be saved if he was no longer around. That goes for each and every poacher. Just get rid of them one by one. The elephants lives are far too precious to be ended by morons.

7:10AM PDT on Aug 16, 2012

poor poor elephants who suffered so unnecessary for this perverted human LUST of money... so sad...

4:20AM PDT on Aug 5, 2012

Throw him in jail, lose the key and forget all about him.

9:25PM PST on Feb 21, 2012

jail, not bail! a jear for every tusk

4:37PM PST on Feb 21, 2012

Pull all his teeth (without anesthesia), then shoot him.

Barbaric but just.

2:34PM PST on Feb 21, 2012

Victor Gordon deserves life in prison. He perpetrated the hunting and killin, and also trying to disguise the ivory to look old. Man has become so greedy and so inhumane!

8:23AM PST on Feb 21, 2012

‎"The greatness of a nation and it's moral progress can be determined by the ways it treats it's animals."
Mahatma Gandhi

4:28PM PST on Feb 20, 2012

Thank you, we must stop these acts against animals and punish the accused!!!!!!

9:33AM PST on Feb 20, 2012

twenty years is not enough, this man contributed to the deaths of an unknown number of intelligent beings, and he should spend the rest of his life in prison.

8:57AM PST on Feb 20, 2012

Should be buired in Elephant crap !!

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